|Black Student Invited to 'KKK Party'|
|By RUSSELL GOLDMAN (@GoldmanRussell)||Mar 8, 2013, 11:52 AM|
A black student at a Texas junior high school was the victim of routine racial taunts and bullying, including his receiving a fake invitation to a KKK birthday party to be held in his honor, his mother says.
Justin Howard, a seventh-grader at Tomball Junior High School in Tomball, Texas, has been harassed by a group of white students who bullied him because he is black, according to his mother, Tahiyyah Howard.
"I'm just, really, you know, sick of it," Howard told ABC News affiliate KTRK-TV. "A girl wrote on the board 'Black Justin' and my son was really upset."
The most egregious example, the boy's mother said, came when Justin received a fake birthday party invitation from two classmates with a Ku Klux Klan theme. It is unclear about how the boy became aware of the note.
"[They] put it on his desk and said that he was invited to a KKK birthday party with lots of fun and games," said Howard, who has not sought action outside the school.
Tomball school officials confirmed the note but said Justin never saw it. Officials said the students who wrote it had been disciplined.
"Two Tomball Junior High students left a note for a third student that referenced the Ku Klux Klan," school district spokeswoman Staci Stanfield said in a statement. "The teacher picked up the note before the intended recipient could see it. The campus administrators were notified and took proactive steps by contacting the parent of the intended recipient to inform the parent of the situation.
"The behavior of the two students who wrote the note is not acceptable. Both students who left the note were disciplined according to the District's Student Code of Conduct," she added.
Legally, school officials cannot publically disclose information about students, including how specifically they were punished, Stanfield told ABCNews.com.
The victim's mother told KTRK, "They [the students] need to know that there are consequences and not just one-day suspension where they can go home and play video games all day. I think the parents should teach their kids that being racist or bullying is not OK, no matter if you're playing around or just being mean. It's just not OK."
Howard could not be reached by ABC News to confirm that her son had not seen the note.
Tomball, a Houston suburb of about 10,000 residents, is about 87 percent white and 5 percent black, according to recent census data.
The Texas ACLU told ABC News.com that it was aware of the incident.